>Group travel is a corporate experience and the individual bears >some responsibility for being a good member of the group. If you >want to set exclusively your own pace, please don't join my >group; in many places you can hire your own guide and just get >back to a central meeting place on time to catch the boat.
I would certainly agree with that advice
When my wife and I have been part of organised shore excursions from a cruise ship, I have deliberately chosen to carry only my D300 with a 16-85mm VR lens (and sometimes a Speedlight). Keeping the other group members waiting (for whatever reason) is impolite and can spoil the experience for everyone else.
When exploring ashore under our own steam, we can do what we like at our own pace and then I generally carry a wider zoom like the 16-35mm VR, a fast prime and a longer option like a 135mm.